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Rights in The Constitution. What is the American Dream?

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Presentation on theme: "Rights in The Constitution. What is the American Dream?"— Presentation transcript:

1 Rights in The Constitution

2 What is the American Dream?

3 1.Definitions of Rights 2.The Founders’ View on Rights - What is the origin of rights? - Who possesses these rights? - Why do rights matter? 3.The Actual Words of the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution in Regards to Rights 4.Modern Day Confusion of Rights 5.What We Can Do About It What We Will Cover:

4 Webster’s 1828 Dictionary Right: (adjective) “Accordant to the standard of truth and justice or the will of God. That alone is right in the sight of God, which is consonant to his will or law; this being the only perfect standard of truth and justice.

5 Webster’s 1828 Dictionary “Accordant to the standard of truth and justice or the will of God. That alone is right in the sight of God, which is consonant to his will or law; this being the only perfect standard of truth and justice. In social and political affairs, that is right which is consonant to the laws and customs of a country, provided these laws and customs are not repugnant to the laws of God.” Right: (adjective)

6 Webster’s 1828 Dictionary “Just claim; immunity; privilege. All men have a right to the secure enjoyment of life, personal safety, liberty and property. ” Defended/demanded justifiably by force Freedom that complies with natural law - Freedom to... - Freedom from... Right: (noun)

7 Thomas Jefferson “Can the liberties of a nation be thought secure when we have removed their only firm basis; a conviction in the minds of the people that these liberties are of the gift of God? That they are not to be violated but with his wrath?”

8 Thomas Paine “Rights are not gifts from one man to another, nor from one class of men to another... It is impossible to discover any origin of rights otherwise than in the origin of man; it consequently follows that rights appertain to man in right of his existence, and must therefore be equal to every man.”

9 Frederic Bastiat “Each of us has a natural right - from God - to defend his person, his liberty, and his property. These are the three basic requirements of life, and the preservation of any one of them is completely dependent upon the preservation of the other two.”

10 Frederic Bastiat “It seems to me that the rights of the state can be nothing but the regularizing of pre-existent personal rights. For my part, I cannot conceive a collective right that does not have its foundation in an individual right or presuppose it. Hence, to know whether the state is legitimately invested with a right, we must ask whether the individual has that right in virtue of his nature and in the absence of all government.”.

11 Frederic Bastiat “If every person has the right to defend - even by force - his person, his liberty, and his property, then it follows that a group of men have the right to organize and support a common force to protect these rights constantly. Thus the principle of collective right -- its reason for existing, its lawfulness -- is based on individual right.”

12 James Madison “(We) rest all our political experiments on the capacity of mankind for self-government.”

13 Thomas Jefferson “Of liberty I would say that, in the whole plenitude of its extent, it is unobstructed action according to our will.

14 Thomas Jefferson “Of liberty I would say that, in the whole plenitude of its extent, it is unobstructed action according to our will. But rightful liberty is unobstructed action according to our will within limits drawn around us by the equal rights of others.

15 Thomas Jefferson “Of liberty I would say that, in the whole plenitude of its extent, it is unobstructed action according to our will. But rightful liberty is unobstructed action according to our will within limits drawn around us by the equal rights of others. I do not add 'within the limits of the law,' because law is often but the tyrant's will, and always so when it violates the right of an individual.”

16 “... freedom is not, as we are told, liberty for every man to do what he [desires] (for who could be free when every other man’s humour might domineer over him?). [Freedom is] a liberty to dispose, and order as he [desires], his person, actions, possessions, and his whole property, within the allowance of those laws under which he is, and therein not to be subject to the arbitrary will of another, but freely follow his own.” John Locke

17 “... the end of law is not to abolish or restrain, but to preserve and enlarge freedom. For in all the states of created beings, capable of laws, where there is no law there is no freedom. For liberty is to be free from restraint and violence from others, which cannot be where there is no law.”

18 Thomas Jefferson “With all these blessings, what more is necessary to make us a happy and prosperous people? Still one thing more, fellow citizens - a wise and frugal government, which shall restrain men from injuring one another, shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned. This is the sum of good government.”

19 Thomas Jefferson “The policy of the American government is to leave their citizens free, neither restraining nor aiding them in their pursuits.”

20 The Declaration of Independence

21 “We hold these truths to be self evident, The Declaration of Independence

22 “We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal The Declaration of Independence

23 “We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator The Declaration of Independence

24 “We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, The Declaration of Independence

25 “We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these The Declaration of Independence

26 “We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, The Declaration of Independence

27 “We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty The Declaration of Independence

28 “We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. The Declaration of Independence

29 “We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, The Declaration of Independence

30 “We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed” The Declaration of Independence

31 Samuel Adams “Before the formation of this Constitution... this Declaration of Independence was received and ratified by all the States in the Union and has never been disannuled.”

32 Article VII The ratification of the conventions of nine states, shall be sufficient for the establishment of this Constitution between the states so ratifying the same. done in Convention by the Unanimous Consent of the States present the Seventeenth Day of September in the Year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and Eighty seven and of the Independance of the United States of America the Twelfth In witness whereof We have hereunto subscribed our Names,

33 The Declaration of Independence “... [T]he [Constitution] is but the body and the letter of which the [Declaration of Independence] is the thought and the spirit, and it is always safe to read the letter of the constitution in the spirit of the Declaration of Independence. No duty rests more imperatively upon the courts than the enforcement of those constitutional provisions intended to secure that equality of rights which is the foundation of free government.”

34 “The Declaration of Independence was the promise; the Constitution was the fulfillment.” Warren Burger

35 Benjamin Franklin “Only a virtuous people are capable of freedom. As nations become corrupt and vicious, they have more need of masters.”

36 “Limited” Government Article I, Section 4, Clause 2 “The Congress shall assemble at least once in every year...”

37 Thomas Jefferson “That government is best which governs least, because its people discipline themselves. If we are directed from Washington when to sow and when to reap, we will soon want for bread.”

38 The Preamble to The Constitution of the United States “We the People of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”

39 The Preamble to The Constitution of the United States “We the People of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”

40 Preamble to the Bill of Rights “The conventions of a number of states, having at the time of their adopting the Constitution, expressed a desire, in order to prevent misconstruction or abuse of its powers, that further declaratory and restrictive clauses should be added:

41 Preamble to the Bill of Rights “The conventions of a number of states, having at the time of their adopting the Constitution, expressed a desire, in order to prevent misconstruction or abuse of its powers, that further declaratory and restrictive clauses should be added: And as extending the ground of public confidence in the Government, will best ensure the beneficent ends of its institution; RESOLVED... that the following Articles be proposed... as amendments to the Constitution...”

42 “I go further, and affirm that bills of rights, in the sense and in the extent in which they are contended for, are not only unnecessary in the proposed constitution, but would even be dangerous. They would contain various exceptions to powers which are not granted; and on this very account, would afford a colorable pretext to claim more than were granted. For why declare that things shall not be done which there is no power to do?” Alexander Hamilton

43 “The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.” U.S. Constitution Amendment IX

44 “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.” U.S. Constitution Amendment I

45 “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.” U.S. Constitution Amendment I

46 Alexis de Tocqueville “The Americans make associations to give entertainments, to found seminaries, to build inns, to construct churches, to diffuse books, to send missionaries to the antipodes; in this manner they found hospitals, prisons, and schools.

47 Alexis de Tocqueville “If it is proposed to inculcate some truth or to foster some feeling by the encouragement of a great example, they form a society. Wherever at the head of some new undertaking you see the government in France, or a man of rank in England, in the United States you will be sure to find an association.”

48 “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.” U.S. Constitution Amendment I

49 Wyoming State Constitution Article I, Section 18 “The free exercise and enjoyment of religious profession and worship without discrimination or preference shall be forever guaranteed in this state...

50 Wyoming State Constitution Article I, Section 18 “The free exercise and enjoyment of religious profession and worship without discrimination or preference shall be forever guaranteed in this state... but the liberty of conscience hereby secured shall not be so construed as to excuse acts of licentiousness or justify practices inconsistent with the peace or safety of the state.”

51 U.S. Constitution Amendment X “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution,

52 “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, U.S. Constitution Amendment X

53 “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.” U.S. Constitution Amendment X

54 “No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.” U.S. Constitution Amendment XIV

55 “No person shall... be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law; U.S. Constitution Amendment V

56 James Madison “[Property] in its particular application means 'that dominion which one man claims and exercises over the external things of the world, in exclusion of every other individual.’... and which leaves to every one else the like advantage.

57 James Madison “[Property] in its particular application means 'that dominion which one man claims and exercises over the external things of the world, in exclusion of every other individual.’... and which leaves to every one else the like advantage.... He has an equal property in the free use of his faculties and free choice of the objects on which to employ them.

58 James Madison “[Property] in its particular application means 'that dominion which one man claims and exercises over the external things of the world, in exclusion of every other individual.’... and which leaves to every one else the like advantage.... He has an equal property in the free use of his faculties and free choice of the objects on which to employ them. In a word, as a man is said to have a right to his property, he may be equally said to have a property in his rights.”

59 “No person shall... be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.” U.S. Constitution Amendment V

60 Free from...Free to... To pursue my own version of happiness Use force to defend these freedoms Coercion Invasion Injury/Death Confiscation As an individual, I have the unquestionable, God-given right to be: As long as I don’t infringe on the individual rights of another.

61 Under this Republic – or rule of law – The Constitution explicitly: -Prohibits others (including government) from infringing on my God-given individual rights -Instructs government to act on me only if I have infringed on another individual’s God-given rights

62 God-given Rights Government Force Action

63 “Government is not reason. It is not eloquence. Government is force; like fire it is a dangerous servant - and a fearful master.” George Washington

64 God-given Rights Government Force Government Force

65 God-given Rights Government Force

66 God-given Rights Government Force Do I have the right as an individual to use force to... ?

67 God-given Rights Government Force “That to secure these rights governments were instituted among men” The Declaration of Independence

68 Do I have the right as an individual to use force to... ? “Deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.” The Declaration of Independence

69 God-given Rights Government Force Transportation Security Administration (TSA) Amendment IV: “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be infringed.”

70 God-given Rights Government Force Transportation Security Administration (TSA) Amendment IV: “No warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”

71 Benjamin Franklin “Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.”

72 God-given Rights Government Force Department of Labor, Agriculture, Energy, OSHA, etc. Art 1, Sec 9, Cl 6 – “No preference shall be given by any regulation of commerce... to one state over those of another.” Art 1, Sec 10, Cl 1 – “No State shall... pass any ex post facto law, or law impairing the obligation of contracts.”

73 God-given Rights Government Force Welfare, Social Security, Medicare Amendment V: “No person shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law.” Amendment XIV: “No State shall... deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”

74 “But how is this legal plunder to be identified? Quite simply. See if [government] takes from some persons what belongs to them, and gives it to other persons to whom it does not belong. Frederic Bastiat

75 “But how is this legal plunder to be identified? Quite simply. See if [government] takes from some persons what belongs to them, and gives it to other persons to whom it does not belong. See if [government] benefits one citizen at the expense of another by doing what the citizen himself cannot do without committing a crime.”

76 God-given Rights Government Force National Defense Authorization Act

77 “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.” U.S. Constitution Amendment I

78 God-given Rights Government Force National Defense Authorization Act Amendment V: No person shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law.

79 God-given Rights Government Force National Defense Authorization Act Amendment VI:... the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial by an impartial jury... and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the assistance of counsel for his defence.

80 God-given Rights Government Force Taxes Art 1, Sec 8, Cl 1 – “... provide for the common defence and general welfare... Art 1, Sec 2, Cl 3 – “Direct Taxes shall be apportioned... according to their respective numbers.” Art 1, Sec 9, Cl 4 - “No Capitation, or other direct, Tax shall be laid, unless in Proportion to the Census” [taxes] shall be uniform throughout the United States.”

81 God-given Rights Government Force Zoning Laws Amendment V: “No person shall... be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law...”

82 God-given Rights Government Force Abortion Declaration of Independence: “to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men.” Amendment XIV: “No State shall... deprive any person of life, liberty or property without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”

83 God-given Rights Government Force Homosexual Marriage Declaration of Independence: “... The laws of Nature and of Nature’s God.”

84 God-given Rights Government Force Public Works Declaration of Independence: “... Deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.” Art 1, Sec 8, Cl 1 – “... To provide for the common defence and general welfare” Amendment V: “nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.”

85 “For it is very clear that in fundamental theory socialism and democracy are almost, if not quite, one and the same. They both rest at bottom upon the absolute right of the community to determine its own destiny and that of its members. Men as communities are supreme over men as individuals.” Woodrow Wilson

86 The right to a useful and remunerative job; The right to earn enough to provide adequate food and clothing and recreation; The right of every farmer to raise and sell his products at a return which will give him and his family a decent living; The right of every businessman to trade; The right of every family to a decent home; The right to adequate medical care; The right to adequate protection from the economic fears; The right to a good education. FDR’s 2 nd Bill of Rights Pursuit of Happiness

87 1) Prevent any new unconstitutional programs, policies, and agencies 2) Let current programs, policies, and agencies run their course and not be renewed 3) Phase out programs, policies, and agencies that are indefinite What do we do?

88 “No one in the United States has dared to advance the maxim that everything is permissible for the interests of society... Alexis de Tocqueville

89 “No one in the United States has dared to advance the maxim that everything is permissible for the interests of society... Thus, while the law permits the Americans to do what they please, religion prevents them from conceiving, and forbids them to commit, what is rash or unjust.” Alexis de Tocqueville

90 You can’t legislate morality You can’t make laws based on morality = Laws can’t make you moral or define your morality

91 “... of all the dispositions of habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports.” “ George Washington

92 “Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.” John Adams

93 Samuel Adams “The sum of all is, if we would most truly enjoy the gift of Heaven, let us become a virtuous people; then shall we both deserve and enjoy it. While, on the other hand, if we are universally vicious and debauched in our manners, though the form of our Constitution carries the face of the most exalted freedom, we shall in reality be the most abject slaves.”

94 “Duties are ours - Results are God’s” John Quincy Adams


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